Virginia native earns ACE award after 18-year break in service

  • Published
  • By Airman 1st Class Madeleine E. Jinks
  • 82nd Training Wing Public Affairs

SHEPPARD AIR FORCE BASE, Texas – After an 18-year break in service, Staff Sgt. Nino Rosado, a Virginia native, started his new Air Force career off by earning a 100% average in the 363rd Training Squadron F-22 aircraft armament apprentice course, earning the ace award.

During the 12-block, 37 academic-day course, Rosado and other students in the course learn how to load, unload and position munitions on an aircraft; check and electrically test aircraft weapons release and gun systems; remove, disassemble and inspect parts; and perform armament systems maintenance.

Rank and Name: Staff Sgt. Nino Rosado

Unit: 192nd Virginia Air National Guard/Joint Base Langley-Eustis, Hampton, Virginia

Duty title: F-22 weapons apprentice

Hometown: Mechanicsville, Virginia

Time in Service: One year and eight months in the Air Force; prior service eight years in the Marine Corps

Why you joined the Air Force: I missed being a part of something larger than myself and the camaraderie and discipline that the military offers. I joined the Air National Guard in particular because I am able to serve both of my local communities and go abroad for our country.

Family: Ashley Rosado, wife; Nicholas and Leah, children; Brock and Alyssa, stepchildren.

Hobbies: Gaming with my kids, physical fitness and coaching soccer.

Favorite aspect of the job: I get to weaponize the fifth-generation F-22 Raptor. It is like building a puzzle. You have to work hard with your hands and focus your mind.

Most memorable Air Force experience: Signing my contract with the Air Force. I get the opportunity to do this job for my country again and work with people that have committed themselves to the freedom of our country at any cost; including the ultimate sacrifice.

How do you make responsible choices: Take in all the information first then make the best choice based on that. I keep in mind risk vs. reward

Instructor comment: “The ace award recognizes an individual for scorning 100% on all block tests. In addition to classroom skill, Rosado achieved high standards of leadership, team work and character. Rosado’s dedication to understand the material was evident. He was committed to excelling and he did not fall short. Day in and day out, he was always preparing ahead for class and studying. He showed a high level of professionalism and was a great mentor and motivator to our younger Airmen.” – Tech. Sgt. Carlos Ochoa, 363rd Training Squadron armament master instructor